Activists Take Over Governor's Office to protest lack of Olmstead funds
by Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
July 24, 2001
This article is reproduced here under special arrangement with Inclusion
Daily Express Email News Service.
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND--Disability rights advocates from Maryland ADAPT, TASH
and other groups took over a conference room at Governor Parris N.
Glendening's office on Monday and held it for more than six hours.
The group had been meeting with the governor's chief of staff Alvin C.
Collins and other staff members to discuss the lack of funds to implement
the state's Olmstead plan to provide services for people with disabilities
in their communities instead of nursing homes and institutions.
The advocates were not satisfied when the meeting ended around noon, and
decided the next meeting had to be with the governor, who is also the
chairman of the National Governors' Association.
When they got no commitment that the governor would meet with them, the
group refused to leave.
"We're taxpayers," Liz Obermayer, one of the protesters, was quoted as
saying in Tuesday's Baltimore Sun. "We should have the right to meet with
the governor just like anyone else."
The group held the conference room until around 6:00 Monday night.
In 1999, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the case of L.C. & E.W. vs.
Olmstead that states could not discriminate against people with disabilities
by "inappropriately" placing them in institutions rather than providing
services in the community.
Since the Olmstead decision, the federal government has directed states to
come up with plans to change their systems to reflect the ruling.
The National Conference of State Legislatures put together a report on the
states' responses to the Olmstead ruling. Reports on the status of those
plans is available by clicking on "Appendix B" on the left side of the page:
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